Sheila Sjolseth headshot
Sheila Sjolseth
Ph.D. Student, HDFS


M.S., Human Development and Family Studies, Auburn University
Ed.M. Policy, Assessment, and Instruction, Harvard Graduate School of Education
B.S. Applied Learning and Development – Special Education, The University of Texas at Austin

Research interests
• Social and emotional learning in families
• Anti-racist methodologies for supporting school-family partnerships
• Multidisciplinary approaches to providing mental health services for children

Sjolseth, S., Frosch, C., Owen, M. T., & Redig, S. “I SEE You”: A Descriptive Analysis of Shared Emotional Experiences During Mother-Infant Interaction,” Poster presentation at International Conference of Infant Studies, Ottawa, Canada. (Summer 2022)

Dismondy, M. (2017). The Jelly Donut Difference: Sharing Kindness with the World. Cardinal Rule Press. Contributor: Sheila Sjolseth authored the Parent Focus Section.

Highlights Magazine: Currently a monthly contributor, focusing on kindness and compassion ideas that families can do, strengthening kids interacting with SEL activities. Author of Kindness Section.

Clinical interests:
Coordinating a multidisciplinary approach to providing out-patient mental health services to children

Research projects
Military REACH

• North Texas Community Leader Volunteer Recognition, 2016
• International Points of Light Award: Honoring individuals and groups creating meaningful change in communities across America 2015
• Spotlighted for nonprofit work and focus on kindness and compassion in the American Profile publication, Raising Kind Kids, 2015
• Rush Medical Center: Employee Recognition Award for Exemplary Performance in Transitioning Patients • ForwardTexas Teaching Certificate: Special Education (all grades), 2003
• Texas Teaching Certificate: General Education (1st through 8th grade)
• TBRI: Trust Based Relational Intervention: Practitioner (2020, Karen Purvis Institute of Child Development)
• Certificate: The Teacher and Social and Emotional Learning (2020, University of Colorado Boulder)

Fun Facts
Favorite books/movies?
Calvin and Hobbes comics (when reading with my kids), “Rudy” the movie, obscure cookbooks

Favorite quotes/sayings?
“It’s all in how you choose, unless you choose wrong and then it’s all in how you laugh about it together.” -- Brian Andreas

Hobbies/hidden talents?
Making animal balloons, Being able to connect disparate topics

Childhood jobs?
Pharmacy technician, babysitter, stocker in a hardware store

“The Escape Artist” Cat and a grumpy hedgehog

High School superlative?
It’s a secret.

If you could study any random thing other than HDFS/MFT, what would it be?
Garden architecture and design, how to infuse chaos in a garden to create mystery

Grad School Impressions
"What advice would you offer to someone thinking about graduate school?" You might think it is all about the knowledge you will gain. That is only partly true. Graduate school is about the personal and professional connections you will make. It is about fine-tuning the ability to ask in-depth questions and learning how to navigate the gray areas in your profession in an ethical and progressive manner.